Abraham Rubert-Schewel, NEXT Leadership Class of 2023
Abe Rubert-Schewel is one of the 20 members of the NCAJ NEXT Leadership Program class of 2023. The program, which graduated its first class in 2022, identifies the state’s emerging trial lawyer leaders.
Lives in: Durham
Law degree from: University of Miami School of Law
Works as: Partner at Tin, Fulton, Walker & Owen, PLLC
Legal Association Involvement: Federal Bar Association, National Police Accountability Project, Board Member of the ACLU of North Carolina, member of the ACLU’s Legal Committee, past member of the Inn of Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, North Carolina Mock Trial competition coach for Hillside Highschool in 2021, coach for St. John Law School’s Black Students Association Mock Trial Team 2016-2018.
Why NCAJ NEXT?
I have a lot to learn!
I moved back to my hometown of Durham in March of 2020 after over a decade living outside the state. I attended college at UNC Chapel-Hill, was a teacher in Jackson, MS, studied law at the University of Miami, and worked my first legal jobs in New York City (as a public defender and clerk for a federal district court judge).
Joining Tin Fulton Walker & Owen, PLLC, opened many doors for me across the state but I know I can become even more engaged. The past two years have been an especially difficult time to connect, and participating in NCAJ NEXT will allow me to become a better lawyer, leader, colleague and possibly legislator.
Why is the idea of civil and criminal justice important to you?
Civil and criminal justice is what defines my practice. I am a civil rights lawyer. I started my career as a public defender, was lucky enough to clerk for a federal judge, Jack Weinstein, who was part of the legal team for Brown v. Board, and a social justice icon. I then started my own civil rights practice in New York City and now am a civil rights lawyer at Tin Fulton.
My cases seek to address jail and prison conditions, Confederate monuments in front of county courthouses, police who fabricate evidence, and the wrongfully convicted and imprisoned. Many of my clients would go unrepresented if we did not take their cases, but they are some of the most important in creating a free and fair society.
What’s your vision for the future of NCAJ?
A leader of legal policy, social change and the protector of citizens’ rights across the state of North Carolina. A place where all plaintiffs’ attorneys and criminal defense attorneys can go for education, camaraderie and mentorship.
NCAJ will continue to grow in influence as a leader and policy maker in the General Assembly and in judicial races across the state. Legislators, lawyers and judges will look to NCAJ for guidance on rule making, legislation, legal policy and ethics. We have to be forward thinking, prepared, and well financed, if we hope to continue to be successful in expanding the rights of all North Carolinians.
Away from work …
I am a father of a 1-year-old girl. My wife and I take her to the pool, park, grandparents’ house and to eat pizza and Mexican food. I play soccer in the Orange County Adult 30-and-over league and will do so as long as I can keep up. I also enjoy kayaking, the beach and outdoor sports.
I went to Durham School of the Arts and North Carolina Governor’s school for theater and still perform when I can. I am a former high school boys and girls varsity soccer coach and cannot wait to coach again.